Go behind the scenes of World Heli Challenge 2012 in Wanaka, NZ

Comments by Henrik Lampert/

From The Daily Dump Snow Report on Vimeo:

“It’s not everyday that you get to go cruising around the mountains of Wanaka in a helicopter but I guess the World Heli Challenge isn’t your everyday comp.

Inspired and fueled by people who love adrenaline, extreme steeps and anything to do with pristine powder snow stuck to a mountain, these two days of competition are not easy to forget.

Grizzly grumpy clouds and snowstorms have kept the pristine metal birds of the Heli Challenge on the ground for the last week. The athletes involved were becoming so anxious that it was necessary to introduce toy helicopters into the equation. It kept them quiet and amused until today, the first official fly day of the WHC-Freestyle Day.

Freestyle Day is the adoring result of park rat and big mountain hippie’s love child. There is extreme terrain, luscious landings preceded by lips and hips dotted around the course. Riders are judged on style, tricks, originality, amplitude, technique and most importantly their ability to stomp.

At the early hour of 5:30am when you should still in bed, athletes around the Southern Lake District were gearing up and heading out to the Aspiring Helis hanger at the base of Treble Cone.

We were stoked but there was concern rippling through the crowd as the heavens weren’t as clear as they were supposed to be. It was said to be an inversion layer, in which the peaks we wanted to access were piercing through to reach the sun. Nonetheless, we had to wait on standby for an hour or so until the helis could follow the mountains up to the bluebird day upstairs.”

- Nat Segal Freeskier / Guest Blogger